One of the key components of a great pie crust is the time spent doing nothing. Before you begin, the butter needs to chill in the freezer. After your dough is mixed it has to rest in the refrigerator before you roll it out, and if you want a really flaky crust you’ll freeze it again right before baking. The butter needs to stay cold and the time spent resting helps the gluten in the flour to relax.
I remember the first few times I made a pie, I couldn’t get the dough to cooperate and I just kept fiddling with it; I could feel the temperature of the dough and my own frustration rising. The more I tried to fix it, the harder the dough became to work with as the chains of gluten became a tangled mess. The best thing to do would have been to take a break and come back to it later after it had cooled down in the fridge.
As a mother, when my anger rises, one of the hardest things for me to do is to leave the situation alone for a while. My desire to swiftly address the behavior overrides what I really need in order to think clearly and act calmly: time for emotions on both sides to relax. It’s counterintuitive, but sometimes the best thing to do, for the time being, is nothing.
Noel Miller is a stay-at-home mother, writer and photographer. She was born and raised in Chicagoland where she lives with her husband and their three little ones (ages baby to five). She writes about faith, family, and home at www.theologyofpie.com.